ALLOPURINOL (al oh PURE i nole) treats gout or kidney stones. It may also be used to prevent high uric acid levels after chemotherapy. It works by decreasing uric acid levels in your body.
What should I tell my care team before I take this medication?
They need to know if you have any of these conditions:
An unusual or allergic reaction to allopurinol, other medications, foods, dyes, or preservatives
Pregnant or trying to get pregnant
How should I use this medication?
Take this medication by mouth with a glass of water. Follow the directions on the prescription label. If this medication upsets your stomach, take it with food or milk. Take your doses at regular intervals. Do not take your medication more often than directed.
Talk to your care team regarding the use of this medication in children. Special care may be needed. While this medication may be prescribed for children as young as 6 years for selected conditions, precautions do apply.
What if I miss a dose?
If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, take only that dose. Do not take double or extra doses.
What may interact with this medication?
Do not take this medication with the following:
This medication may also interact with the following:
Certain antibiotics like amoxicillin, ampicillin
Certain medications for cancer
Certain medications for immunosuppression like azathioprine, cyclosporine, mercaptopurine
Thiazide diuretics, like hydrochlorothiazide
What side effects may I notice from receiving this medication?
Side effects that you should report to your care team as soon as possible:
Allergic reactions—skin rash, itching, hives, swelling of the face, lips, tongue, or throat
Kidney injury—decrease in the amount of urine, swelling of the ankles, hands, or feet
Liver injury—right upper belly pain, loss of appetite, nausea, light-colored stool, dark yellow or brown urine, yellowing skin or eyes, unusual weakness or fatigue
Rash, fever, and swollen lymph nodes
Redness, blistering, peeling, or loosening of the skin, including inside the mouth
Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your care team if they continue or are bothersome):
What should I watch for while using this medication?
Visit your care team for regular checks on your progress. If you are taking this medication to treat gout, you may not have less frequent attacks at first. Keep taking your medication regularly and the attacks should get better within 2 to 6 weeks. Drink plenty of water (10 to 12 full glasses a day) while you are taking this medication. This will help to reduce stomach upset and reduce the risk of getting gout or kidney stones.
Call your care team at once if you get a skin rash together with chills, fever, sore throat, or nausea and vomiting, if you have blood in your urine, or difficulty passing urine.
This medication may cause serious skin reactions. They can happen weeks to months after starting the medication. Contact your care team right away if you notice fevers or flu-like symptoms with a rash. The rash may be red or purple and then turn into blisters or peeling of the skin. Or, you might notice a red rash with swelling of the face, lips or lymph nodes in your neck or under your arms.
Do not take vitamin C without asking your care team. Too much vitamin C can increase the chance of getting kidney stones.
You may get drowsy or dizzy. Do not drive, use machinery, or do anything that needs mental alertness until you know how this medication affects you. Do not stand or sit up quickly, especially if you are an older patient. This reduces the risk of dizzy or fainting spells. Alcohol can make you more drowsy and dizzy. Alcohol can also increase the chance of stomach problems and increase the amount of uric acid in your blood. Avoid alcoholic drinks.
Where should I keep my medication?
Keep out of the reach of children and pets.
Store at room temperature between 15 and 25 degrees C (59 and 77 degrees F). Protect from light and moisture. Throw away any unused medication after the expiration date.
K Health articles are all written and reviewed by MDs, PhDs, NPs, or PharmDs and are for informational purposes only. This information does not constitute and should not be relied on for professional medical advice. Always talk to your doctor about the risks and benefits of any treatment.
This information is educational only and should not be construed as specific instructions for individual patients nor as a substitute for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Talk to your health care provider or pharmacist about the information and instructions. K Health assumes no liability for any use or reliance on this information.